Cannabis may attenuate brain injury following intracerebral hemorrhage, according to a new study being published by the International Journal of Molecular Medicine, and epublished ahead of print by the National Institute of Health.
According to the Mayo Clinic, an intracerebral hemorrhage is “an emergency condition in which a ruptured blood vessel causes bleeding inside the brain.” Researchers from this new study state that “Blood‑brain barrier (BBB) disruption and consequent edema formation are the most common brain injuries following intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH).” Endocannabinoid receptors “can alter the permeability of various epithelial barriers and have potential neuroprotective effects. “
With that in mind, the present study “aimed to explore whether the selective cannabinoid receptor 2 (CNR2) agonist, JWH133 [meant to mimic the effects of cannabis-based cannabinoids], can ameliorate BBB integrity and behavioral outcome by activating Ras‑related C3 botulinum toxin substrate 1 (Rac1) following ICH.”
The results “demonstrated that JWH133 treatment improved neurofunctional deficits, reduced perihematomal brain edema and alleviated BBB damage at 24 and 72 h following ICH.” In addition, “JWH133 treatment increased the protein expression levels of guanosine‑5’‑triphosphate‑Rac1 and of the adherens junction proteins occludin, zonula occludens‑1 and claudin‑5.”
In conclusion, “the present findings revealed that JWH133 treatment attenuated brain injury in a rat model of ICH via activation of the Rac1 signaling pathway, thus preserving BBB integrity.”
The results of the study are similar to the findings of a study published earlier this year in the journal Brain Research. which found that cannabinoids may alleviate neuroinflammation and protect the blood-brain barrier following an intracerebral hemorrhage.